2014 HRM Impact Award Winner


Message from SHC Chief HR Officer Dean Carter

“The SHC Executive Assessment has helped us leverage data to analytically model which leaders best fit critical roles as our organizational transformation evolves. The results are used by our senior leadership team and CEO to make key selection decisions. We are honored to accept this prestigious Award and thank SHRM, SIOP, and their respective Foundations for the recognition. I also thank all of those involved, including our internal team along with our consulting partners at Select international. Together we were able to blend the finest aspects of innovative assessment science with SHC’s transformational business needs to craft the ideal leadership team for our future.”


Selecting Successful Leaders With Sears Holdings Corporation’s Executive Assessment


With increased competition, heightened shareholder expectations, varying market conditions, and rapidly changing and improving technology, Sears Holdings Corporation (SHC) is challenged with selecting executive leaders who have the desired attributes and competencies to take advantage of the many future opportunities awaiting the company. As part of our strategy, Sears is placing a heavy emphasis on our Shop Your Way (SYW) Rewards program members and Integrated Retail initiative while also focusing on the development of internal technology that will enhance associate performance. Highly capable leaders within our 30+ business units (BUs) are needed to support this transformational strategy.

In support of this search for top leaders, SHC partnered with Select International to develop and refine our Leadership Competency Model over the years and create an Executive Assessment (EA) process to measure these critical competencies. This process contains a four-hour assessment battery, review of the executive’s resume and background, plus a one-hour interview with an assessor (Ph.D. psychologist), who further explores a candidate’s experience, motivation, and fit with the organization, BU, and role.

In a recent validation study, EA data was collected between 2010 and early 2013. Results indicated that EA results do an excellent job of correlating with executive performance, including overall performance ratings across all four years; executives’ 9-box ratings; engagement metrics of their teams; number of succession nominations; retention of top talent in one’s organization; and actual and forecasted revenues for their organization.

Overall, empirical evidence supports the utility of SHC’s EA process on important financial-related (e.g., Actual Revenue) and people-related (e.g., Actual Retention) outcomes, at both the individual and BU level. Based on these results, SHC uses the Executive Assessment as a key component in selecting the right leaders for key roles, who we anticipate will play a critical part in our transformation.